We’re at the end of the third week of classes at Indiana University, and here is an article every student should read. Ben Yeager’s story is admittedly extreme, but it illustrates how dangerous binge drinking can be. A little closer to home, there is the tragic story of Rachael Fiege, who died after a fatal head injury at a party in 2013.
In college, I was a teetotaler. I held the belief that drinking was sinful. (I was wrong.) Even today, I am effectively a teetotaler because I never developed a taste for alcohol and I cannot stand the taste of it. I avoid alcohol today for the same reason I avoid grapefruit. I do not feel I missed anything by not drinking, though. And the stories of Yeager and Fiege are a reminder of just how dangerous abusing alcohol can be.
Yeager was incredibly lucky. Fiege was not. Yeager could have died, been crippled, or killed someone else many times over. He recognizes his problem and I applaud his courage in speaking out on a national platform to educate others. I only hope his story will wake up students in a similar situation or wake up those students’ friends as to why they need to intervene if they truly care for those friends. Addicts rarely recognize their problem. They need loving friends, and will more likely listen to their friends than family or authority figures.
This is serious business. It is better to lose a friendship because you tried to help than to lose a friend to the grave.